Marshall Celebrates 2023 Spring Commencement


Sarah Davis, Staff Reporter

Marshall celebrated its graduating students during the Spring Commencement ceremony on Saturday, April 29. This included undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students.

The Spring Commencement consisted of two ceremonies, the morning ceremony at 9 a.m. and the afternoon at 2 p.m., with both taking place at the Mountain Health Arena.

The morning ceremony honored graduating students from the Colleges of Business, Education, Science, Engineering and Computer Sciences and Pharmacy, along with those in anesthesia nursing and biomedical research.

The afternoon ceremony hosted the Colleges of Health Professions, Arts and Media, Liberal Arts and Regents Bachelors of Arts, along with students in physical therapy. 

The graduates were joined by their families, friends and faculty members.

Isabella Griffiths, student body president and graduating student from the College of Health Professions, addressed her community by highlighting the challenges they have faced.

“When we face adversity, we stand strong together and work our way through it,” she said to the audience. “We’ve experienced a new pandemic, new athletic conference, new president and now, the newest chapter of our lives together.”

The ceremony’s main speaker was John Donahoe, a graduate from Stanford’s School of Business and president/CEO of Nike, Inc. 

Donahoe proposed multiple ideas to the graduates in terms of achieving success.

“The best leaders build bridges, not islands,” he said. “You’re going to encounter many people through your journey, people who will often have different perspectives than yours. Be a connector of people. Bring people together, especially those who are different from you or with whom you may disagree.”

He also went on to stress the importance of union, or “bridge-building.”

“Collaboration across diverse perspectives absolutely drives the best innovation and results,”  Donahoe said.

Following his speech, Marshall President Brad D. Smith, along with other faculty members, confirmed the graduating students and their earned degrees.

Smith ended his confirmation statement saying, “Congratulations, Class of 2023. Go Herd.”

Graduates then received their degrees as they walked across the stage and into the next chapters of their lives.